In 1963 David Lewis, FAIA came to Carnegie Institute of Technology (now CMU) as the Andrew Mellon Professor of Architecture and Urban Design. Lewis started one of the first graduate programs in urban design in which students learned to work hands-on with elected officials, agency representatives, and citizens on community design and development projects.
In 1964 Lewis founded Urban Design Associates (UDA), the internationally known and pioneering Pittsburgh-based architecture and urban design firm. When Lewis retired from UDA, he returned to teach at CMU from 1990 to 2000.
In the early 1970s Lewis was a core member of the AIA Regional/Urban Design Assistance Team (R/UDAT) program also serving as Chairman of the AIA National Urban Design Committee in 1976-77. In 1976 he was a Founder-Member of the International Institute of Urban Design.
For those of us fortunate to work with David ... as I and my colleagues and students at Ball State University were during the P/DAT charrette for the White River Park in Indianapolis ... I believe the following quotes from David, speak volumes about David's philosophy of practice:
"Nothing I have done in my lifetime as an architect and urban designer has been achieved alone," he told the Congress for the New Urbanism, which honored him in 2007.
"The essence of urban design is teamwork," he said, not just the professionals, but "the citizens, to whom all cities rightfully belong.
"We didn't consider ourselves pioneers. We did only what was obvious to us."
Rest well, my friend. You will not be forgotten!
Tony Costello, FAIA